Alipay Payment (Photo : Getty Images)
Alibaba's Alipay ePass program is helping Chinese consumers buy products by foreign merchants as well as international brands to expand their businesses using the program.
According to jingdaily.com, the program provides a solution to fight issues about counterfeit items and the popularity of overseas daigou market.
The program was launched by Alibaba more than two years ago, as the e-commerce giant established a partnership with several international merchants, such as fashion and luxury e-commerce sites Revolve and Gilt.
For luxury brands that intend to use the program, here is the basic Alipay guide to help them:
What is the Alipay ePass program?
The program was launched by Alibaba, together with U.S. brands, in October 2014 to help Chinese shoppers buy foreign products and pay Chinese currency through Alipay. The ePass program also allowed merchants access to Alibaba's global logistics network. International dealers must pay commission fees to the ePass program.
What are the issues addressed by the Alipay ePass Program?
Although it was designed as a payment solution, the program also helps brands with logistics and marketing issues.
How does Alipay ePass Program settle foreign transactions?
As its basic function, the program acts as a third-party entity that settles foreign transactions in behalf of consumers and merchants. This was made possible through Alipay's partnership with the extensive network of financial institutions across the world, enabling them to deal with major currencies and provide reasonable currency rates.
What is the logistics support that brands can get from the program?
As an ePass member, brands can automatically use Alibaba's global logistics network. When a brand gets an order from a Chinese consumer, the goods from the merchants will be picked up by Alibaba's logistics team, then ship them to China to be delivered to the customers. Using Alipay, buyers can also keep track of their orders.
How can the program help protect brands from fake goods?
By working with ePass, international brands gain popularity among Chinese consumers and they earn credibility and legitimacy with them. The program can also endorse international retailers, secure payment for them as well as assure them of the authenticity of the goods they buy on the site. Foreign brands can also use the program as a tool to test the market even without having a physical store in China.
What are the program's new features?
Since its launching, the program has become more localized, with English to Chinese translation for Chinese users. According to Jingming Li, the program's chief designer, it was intentionally designed to provide wealthy Chinese with an "authentic" shopping process online.